One afternoon Sweetpea and I left the school together. As we made our way down the walkway towards Perrysville Ave. he showed me this drawing, Bean Salad. After looking at it for a moment, I asked him where the beans were.
The drawing actually looked more like Alphabet Soup, if anything, and of course I blurted out as much.
In any case a conversation ensued about abstraction and meaning and form. I was 19 or maybe 20 by then, but still being a creative newb with no art history background (yet) and a photography major to boot. Abstraction didn’t make sense to me (then) – although one would not know that (now). Now I’m all about the abstract and conceptual. But back then my mind was literal, and photography comfortably played into that for me. Back then there was a need to see a literal touchstone in a work for me to understand it.
My part of the conversation about Bean Salad was that of a three year old. My questions and comments came down to, where are the beans, why not even one bean, what makes you think of bean salad when you look at this, were you eating bean salad when you drew it??? He became very exasperated with me and my questions and he snapped his book shut and changed the subject.
In going through some of the archives of his drawings one day I noticed that after Bean Salad, many of his similar-in-style drawings were titled simply Untitled.